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Brussels Explained: Join us on 22 October to better understand the city

10:03 08/08/2019

Is Brussels as boring as some claim? Who are the city's homeless people? Where in the capital can you find traces of Belgium's colonial history?

These - and many other - questions will be tackled at Brussels Explained, an eye-opening and interactive evening in English on 22 October that aims to help us better understand the city in which we live.

Five experts will deliver a 10-minute presentation on a different aspect of city life - followed by plenty of opportunity for questions and answers.

The event is jointly organised by The Bulletin, Flemish-Dutch culture house De Buren, the non-profit Curieus vzw and freelance journalist Selma Franssen.

"I'm an expat myself," says Franssen, who moved to Brussels from the Netherlands six years ago. "There are so many questions I have about the city - things that you talk about with friends, but no one really knows the answer.

"Like why are there suddenly all these rental bikes - what are the rules and regulations? Why is the scaffolding up for 30 years on the Justice Palace? I would like to see those things answered, and I think that goes for many people who live here.

"It's the kind of thing that you should Google - but it's more fun to actually hear somebody explain it. Understanding the city better helps you feel at home."

Former Bulletin editor-in-chief Derek Blyth will tell us why Brussels isn't as boring as expats think, while Bulletin journalist Linda Thompson explains the ins and outs of the complex Belgian educational system.

Street worker Filip Keymeulen will talk about homeless people in the Brussels region and Dutch filmmaker Julian Wolf will discuss his film on Brussels' youth. Kevin Kabongo will close the evening with a presentation on the colonial history we encounter when we walk through Brussels.

Brussels Explained, 22 October 19.30-21.30, De Buren, Rue Leopold 6, Brussels
Tickets €5 (€3 for under-26s and over-65s)